US agrees 'compromise' climate deal

Last minute reversal by US delegates paves way for talks towards new climate accord.

    The US decision to adopt the road map was a swift reversal from its earlier position [AFP]
    In depth

    Key points of the deal


    World reaction to Bali

    Delegates from other countries applauded as the US announced its  support for the road map.
    Step Vaessen, Al Jazeera's correspondent in Bali, reported: "Some delegates had given up on this road map and started to pack up, but an agreement came at the very, very last minute.

    "A lot of negotiations are still to be made. There are no emissions targets in this road map, but for developing countries it looks a lot better after this US concession… they want rich nations to take the lead on climate change."


    Mandate details


    The agreement between the 190 member countries of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) came after an extension to 13 days of talks.


    European and US delegates had sparred over the European Union's proposal that the Bali mandate set a 25 to 40 per cent cut in industrial nations' emissions by 2020, compared to 1990.


    Ban Ki-moon, centre, appealed to delegates
    to r

    each a consensus [AFP]

    Those numbers were omitted from the text of the final agreement, with only an indirect reference present.


    The negotiations had also stalled over appeals by developing nations that their need for technological help from developed countries receive more recognition.


    A compromise deal had looked increasingly unlikely before the US decision, prompting Ban Ki-moon, UN secretary-general, to call for delegates to work together.


    "Your work is not yet over ... everybody should be able to make compromises. You have in your hands the ability to deliver to the peoples of the world a successful outcome," he said.


    Amid concerns that no deal would be reached on a road map for negotiations, Yvo de Boer, executive secretary of the UNFCCCC, broke down in frustration.


    Climate talks


    The agreement is a step towards talks aimed at slowing climate change, which the UN climate panel says is caused by human activity.


    Rising global temperatures could cause a significant rise in sea levels and storms and intensify droughts, prompting mass migration of climate refugees.


    After the road map was agreed, talks towards a new treaty to succeed the Kyoto protocol are scheduled to take place in Copenhagen, Denmark, in 2009.


    Kyoto binds all industrial countries, except the US which has not signed up to it, to cut emissions of greenhouse gases between 2008 and 2012.


    The new negotiations will seek to bind all countries, including developing nations, to limits in emission from 2013.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    We visualised 1.2 million votes at the UN since 1946. What do you think are the biggest issues facing the world today?

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    We dialled more than 35,000 random phone numbers to paint an accurate picture of displacement across South Sudan.

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Meet the man on a mission to take down Cambodia's timber tycoons and expose a rampant illegal cross-border trade.